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October and there is a lot of good news around travel

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

October and there is a lot of good news around travel. Over the past month GB Motorhome Tours have completed four very successful tours; two in the Highlands of Scotland, one covering the whole of Ireland and one throughout central Spain. Reports from these tours are just how much people have enjoyed touring, once again feeling relaxed and safe throughout their time away.

Camping in the Scottish Highlands

‘A well thought out scenic spectacular route. The group meals were particularly enjoyable, good varied food in interesting locations. The campsites were busy making it difficult to always park together, but Sue and Dave who must have walked miles remained full of beans. We have certainly enjoyed ourselves immensely.’ Jean and Martin Saul – Scotland Highlands and NC500 – Sept 2021

‘We’re coming to the end of our first trip with GB Motorhome Tours and what a great trip it’s been. Karen and John have been superb hosts, giving us just the right balance of help and advice – we thank them a great deal.’ Chris and Joe Peacock – Scotland Highlands and Royal Deeside – Sept 2021

Camping in central Ireland

‘We have had a simply fantastic time Meandering Around Ireland. Ron & Sue were excellent company and great tour leaders, always available with advice and tips when needed. The campsites were in great location and we found Ireland very motorhome friendly and the people very hospitable and helpful.’ Jane & Colin Young – Meander Around Ireland – September 2021

Camping in Andalucía, southern Spain

‘We very much appreciated the professional friendly guidance of our experienced and knowledgeable tour hosts, Nurcan and Kevin. Our tour of Spain has been enjoyable and varied. Of particular interest were the excursions into the Monfrague National Park, Ronda and Madrid; all led by a host of informative local guides. Thank you for an excellent holiday.’ Simon and Helen Wood – A Journey Through Spain – September 2021 

The above reviews cover just one from each of the four September tours. Further customers reviews for these tours can be read on the GB Motorhome Tours website reviews page, along with reviews from tours spanning many previous years and destinations.

Going forward travel is getting ever more simplified again, with Covid-19 regulations continuing to be reduced. This week the UK government announced a further relaxation of testing requirements for those returning to the UK following continental travel. There remains some paperwork required for foreign travel, however, this is now minimal, particularly for the fully vaccinated. GB Motorhome Tours constantly monitors each countries requirements for those participating in tours. These requirements are communicated to all tour participants, with assistance in complying provided by our office staff and Tour Directors.

Looking ahead to the coming winter, for those who would like to tour in their own motorhome in a warm climate, the GB Motorhome Tours Canary Islands tour, starting early January 2022, provides the perfect opportunity. There remains two places available on this tour. Book now to take yourself and your motorhome away for 70 days of after Christmas winter warmth and adventure. For one motorhome who would like a shorter winter tour, there has just become available a cancellation place on the Christmas Magical Bruges and Amsterdam tour, 4-10th December 2021. Booking of these tours can be done directly on the GB Motorhome Tours website booking page.

For next year, there are currently two new tours being finalised. A three-week tour along the Atlantic Coast of France in June/July and a four-week northern Italy tour throughout September. Full tour itineraries for these should be available in around a months time, keep an eye on the GB Motorhome Tours website for them. Further additional tours for 2022 could also be made available prior to the end of this year.

With November approaching and cooler temperatures possible; if you’re not using your motorhome do remember to drain down the water systems so to avoid potential damage from frozen tanks and pipes. How to do this is usually covered in your motorhome habitation manuals, or if in doubt give your motorhome dealer a call and they should be able to guide you.

If there is anything you wish to ask about a tour feel free to contact us, we are always happy to assist.

Kindest regards,

Your GB Motorhome Tours Team

Tel. 0044 7481 479 057
Info@gbmotorhometours.com
www.GBMotorhomeTours.com

September and it’s a great time to be touring in a motorhome

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

September and it’s a great time to be touring in a motorhome. GB Motorhome Tours presently has four tours taking place; two covering Scotland, one in Ireland and one in Spain.

Both Scotland tours have passed through the lovely western Highlands coastal town of Oban, with one group now branching off to take the NC500 route (North Coast 500 mile route), whilst the other is heading towards the castle area of Royal Deeside.

Camping Oban – Scotland Highlands and Royal Deeside tour

The Ireland tour is now travelling along the Wild Atlantic Way, a great scenic route on the west coast of the Republic, having just completed the ‘Ring of Kerry’.

Camping on the ‘Ring of Kerry’ – Meander Around Ireland tour

The Spain tour travelled directly from Portsmouth to Santander on board Brittany Ferries new ship Galicia, which really is a very pleasant way to arrive quickly to Spain and in a relaxed manner. The boat is new and very comfortable; with spacious cabins and good quality restaurants. The Spain tour is now on the Costa de la Luz (Coast of Light), having visited Noja on the Costa Verde (Green Coast), Burgos, Salamanca, Monfrague National Park and Seville, as they travelled from the north to south coasts over 10 days.

Camping Playa Las Dunas – A Journey Through Spain tour

Reports back from all tours is just how enjoyable people are once again finding travel.

With a further relaxing of foreign travel regulations having been announced by the UK Government this week, to take effect in stages throughout September and October, travel going forward is returning to a more normal. Reports back from the Spain tour are that, providing someone is vaccinated there are no restrictions for entry to Spain or for travel throughout the whole country.

If you are looking to get away for some sunshine and warm weather sooner rather than later, take a look at our Canary Island’s winter tour. Starting in January, this tour offers the opportunity of being away from the UK winter and enjoying the very best weather Europe has to offer over this period, sunny days with temperatures in the 20’s are typical in the Canary Islands throughout January, February and March. Full tour details are available by clicking on Canary Islands winter tour.

As more people begin to plan their travel for the coming year, following Brexit, it is necessary to be mindful of the Schengen visa regulations that British citizens now need to abide by for travel in most EU countries. These are detailed on the EU’s official Schengen visa website where a handy calculator is also located for checking that your own travel plans keep you within the rules. If you are looking to join a tour and would like us to also make a check for you, then feel free to contact us and we’ll happily assist with this.

As travel becomes easier, we look forward to touring with you again very soon.

Kindest regards,

Your GB Motorhome Tours Team

Tel. 0044 7481 479 057
Info@gbmotorhometours.com
www.GBMotorhomeTours.com

August and the GB Motorhome Tours touring season starts again very soon

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

August and the GB Motorhome Tours touring season starts again very soon. At the end of this month our Meander around Ireland tour starts, this is then followed in September with the Scotland Highlands and NC500 tour, then A Journey Through Spain and the Scotland Highlands and Royal Deeside tours. With places available on three of these four tours (Scotland Highlands and NC500 is now full) there remains an opportunity to join a fully organised motorhome holiday for next month. The three available tours feature in more detail at the bottom of this newsletter.

Before the touring season restarts, we’re currently in the main season for the large outdoor motorhome shows. Last weekend GB Motorhome Tours were at the Norfolk show in Norwich and next weekend will be at the Western show in Malvern. Do come along and see us in Malvern, where a number of our Tour Directors will be on hand to chat and answer tour questions.

From our spring UK tours of this year a number of our Tour Directors captured some great evening sky photos over campsites included on the tours. One from the Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos UK tour, taken in Porlock, Somerset is below. More can be seen on the GB Motorhome Tours website photo page, where photos from tours over many years and in varying locations feature, take a look at www.gbmotorhometours.com/photos

Over the last 12 months it is likely many regular travellers who had annual or regular travel insurance policies in place will have let these lapse. With travel beginning to return, now is a good time to start thinking about putting these back in place. For foreign travel a good personal travel insurance policy provides invaluable protection in the event of unexpected medical treatment being required whilst away. Travel insurance also provides the protection for claiming back money paid for holidays should these need to be cancelled for reasons beyond the policy holders control and covered by the policy. For holidaying in the UK the medical side of personal travel insurance is not really necessary as access to the NHS is available, however, having travel insurance in place is still beneficial for protecting money paid for holidays should cancellation be required. Throughout 2020 and 2021 GB Motorhome Tours have operated a fully flexible booking policy, allowing tour participants (up to the time of the tour balance payment becoming due) to freely transfer between tours or to delay travel if they have felt uncomfortable about travel at the time of their tour. This flexibility will continue going forward for as long as there remains uncertainty around travel, giving everyone confidence of knowing they can book a tour and make changes later without charge. In addition to this flexibility, GB Motorhome Tours still strongly recommends tour participants have in place personal travel insurance from the time of making a booking, as whilst we continue to offer a very high degree of flexibility, we cannot easily move bookings once the balance payment due date has passed. In this case travel insurance can step in to cover the holiday cost.

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July and much touring has been taking place

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

July and lots of touring has been taking place over the last month. A Journey Around Ireland tour plus the Exmoor Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos tour have both recently finished. A common theme of customer feedback from all completed tours is just how ‘normal’ they felt things were whilst away. It can be easy to think from much of the media’s take on travel that it is all but impossible to get away, in fact this is not really the case, not even totally for foreign travel. However, what is currently required, even more so than in normal times, is that tours are planned meticulously and when done so, things can feel ‘normal’. Of the UK motorhome tour operators (including the two large clubs) GB Motorhome Tours remains the only tour operator to have offered and complete tours in 2020 and so far throughout all of 2021.

Some customer reviews from the recently completed A Journey Around Ireland tour.

’The stunning Irish scenery and hospitality, coupled with the ability to interact with the group made our first post lockdown long trip truly memorable. Thanks to Ron & Sue for again juggling changing circumstances to deliver memories and experiences for all,’ Jackie & Andy Kitchin – A Journey Around Ireland – June 2021

‘In all the circumstances, this trip proved ideal. Euros, Kilometres and the Gaelic gave us that crucial continental air, we felt that we were abroad. Ron & Sue managed the campsites and meals brilliantly and smoothing our way at all times. The meals and venues were all up to GB Motorhome Tours standard and there can be no higher praise.’ Margaret & Joe Ratcliffe – A Journey Around Ireland – June 2021

‘A great trip around Ireland considering all the restrictions at the moment. We both appreciate the input from Ron & Sue, made into making this a memorable and sociable trip. We really look forward to next years tour.’ Sue & Al Colley – A Journey Around Ireland – June 2021

The above photo is from Doolin on the Cliffs of Moher along the Wild Atlantic Way on Irelands west coast and taken during the recent Ireland tour. A further Meander Around Ireland tour is taking place throughout September and includes a 3-night stay at Doolin. There remains some availability on this tour.

Some reviews from the completed Exmoor Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos tour.

‘For our first GB Motorhomes Tour we were not sure what to expect – honestly, we had told friends and they had laughed about our ‘old people’s” trip! How wrong could they have been – we met interesting, fun and such lovely people – been chaperoned by two delightful guides, one an organiser who goes above and beyond, the other whose knowledge is like traveling with your own encyclopaedia! Jesting aside we have thoroughly enjoyed our first GB Tour – and watch this space as ‘we will be back’ and signing up for future tours. Many thanks’ Dave and Lyn Humphries – UK Fleeces to Flamingos – June/July 2021

‘Yet another fantastic GB tour. Liz and Dave went out of their way to make our stay both enjoyable, fun and informative. Dave’s amazing knowledge of all things nature added to our enjoyment with native walks and adventures even if we did get wet feet!’ Iain and Sue Munro – UK Fleeces to Flamingos – June/July 2021

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June and lots of touring is taking place in good weather

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

June and lots of touring is taking place in good weather. Over the last month the Scotland Highlands and NC500 tour has been completed, A Journey Around Ireland tour is underway and the Exmoor Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos tour is just about to start. These tours offer socially distanced travel in the company of like-minded people, with all the organisation being taken care of by GB Motorhome Tours. Each tour has been personally researched and is accompanied by experienced Tour Leaders who are passionate for escorting you and your motorhome to great places.

The Scotland Highlands and NC500 tour finished this week, having travelled extensively throughout the Highlands and North Coastal 500 route over the last month, almost totally in dry conditions.

Dunvegan Camping, Isle of Skye – 01/06/2021

Some tour participants reviews from the tour.

‘Despite the restrictions of the Covid Pandemic, Kevin and Nurcan have managed to provide an all encompassing, friendly and above all, a memorable and informative tour. As usual their attention to detail is second to none and this stands out.’ Clive and Sue Swift – Scotland Highlands and NC500 – May/June 2021

‘Excellent tour with wonderful scenery and very well organised despite Covid restrictions. We were well looked after and given lots of ideas for places to see en-route and on site.’ Sue and Derek Davies – Scotland Highlands and NC500 – May/June 2021

‘Forget breakfast at Tiffany’s go for Afternoon Tea at Atholl Palace! Imagine glorious carpets of Bluebells, endless Rhododendrons, Gorse & Broom; throw in a few Standing Stones, Castles (ruined or lived in), Scenic Lochs, Dramatic Coasts, Cliffs and Sand Dunes; plus many a wee Mountain and this was our Scotland Highlands and NC500 tour. Brilliantly organised and escorted.’ Susanna and Ted Brooking – Scotland Highlands and NC500 – May/June 2021

Atholl Palace, group ‘Afternoon Tea’ 14/06/2021

Whilst all current tours being undertaken are UK based, GB Motorhome Tours is rightly known for its foreign tours.

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May and touring is once again underway

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

May and touring is once again underway. This week is the start of the GB Motorhome Tours’ Scotland Highlands and NC500 tour, with tour participants meeting in a well appointed campsite at Loch Lomond.

Loch Lomond Camping – 25/05/2021

This tour is fully socially distanced allowing all to enjoy a safe holiday whilst travelling in their own motorhome. The scenery is simply stunning, which only the Highlands of Scotland can provide as part of UK touring. A repeat of this tour has just been confirmed for September this year, and this is now available on the GB Motorhome Tours website. The full itinerary is at https://www.gbmotorhometours.com/tour/scotland-highlands-nc500 with bookings available via the GB Motorhome Tours website.

In the next couple of weeks, the GB Motorhome Tours’ A Journey Around Ireland starts. This tour makes a complete circle of Ireland sticking mostly to the coastal areas and following much of the Wild Atlantic Way along the dramatic west coast. The tour is now fully booked so we are unable to offer any further opportunities for joining this.

A tour which currently does offer an opportunity to join, is the Exmoor Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos tour. Starting near Taunton on Monday 21 June this tour gives an opportunity to explore much of the Exmoor national park and the stunning coastline around this area.

Combe Martin, North Devon

Stays at quality campsites in Combe Martin and Porlock on the north Devon and Somerset coasts, provides ideal opportunities for relaxing whilst taking in excellent scenery all around you. From the Exmoor coastal areas the tour travels to Slimbridge and another well appointed campsite on the banks of the Gloucester-Sharpness canal, close to the River Severn. From our campsite the amazing Slimbridge Wetlands Centre is just 800m walk away and it is also possible from here to visit the fascinating Purton Ships’ graveyard. The tours full itinerary is available at https://www.gbmotorhometours.com/tour/uk-exmoor-coastal-fleeces-to-flamingos with bookings via the GB Motorhome Tours website. This tour includes all the GB Motorhome Tours’ benefits of travelling with like minded people whilst having everything arranged for you, along with having the support of our great Tour Directors throughout.

For foreign touring, from Monday 17 May this is no longer subject to any UK Government legal restrictions, making it possible for those who wish to leave the UK for leisure purposes able to do so. There does however remain a number of requirements for both entering other countries and for returning to the UK. GB Motorhome Tours continues to monitor all aspects of foreign travel and keeps fully up to date with all the current regulations and requirements for foreign touring. Where planned foreign tours are safe and sensible to proceed, these will be offered for those who wish to travel at that time. All booked tour participants are kept fully updated on the position for their tours and whilst Covid-19 continues to impact on foreign travel, all tour participants are offered the chance to delay their travel to a later date if they choose travel at that time is not for them. GB Motorhome Tours commitment to providing maximum flexibility and choice for all tour participants will remain for as long as foreign travel is being impacted by Covid-19. Further tours for 2022 will continue to be added to the GB Motorhome Tours website, so keep an eye out for these. Bookings can be made in the confidence of knowing that should Covid-19 have an impact on your tour then you will have flexibility in choosing for yourself if travel is right or not for you at that time.

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April and travel is once again underway

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

April and this month sees the return of UK campsites being open. The general unlocking of travel restrictions for UK citizens progresses in the right direction and it is good to once again see motorhomes moving around the country. For those who wish to travel, doing so in one’s own motorhome with self-contained facilities, offers just about the safest way to be away from home whilst remaining socially distanced and enjoying a holiday.

For UK travel, by the end of April it should be possible to freely move between all of the UK nations and stay away from home at campsites. Our 3 UK and Ireland tours arranged for this spring/summer should now proceed as planned. Whilst the tour of the Scotland Highlands and NC500 is fully booked there remains a couple of available places on the two other tours.

A Journey around Ireland

Dunmore East, County Waterford, Ireland

On this tour before you’ve travelled far you’ll be enchanted and captivated by a land that is simply Ireland. Its people and laid-back atmosphere are just wonderful for relaxed travel. Enjoy late Spring/early Summer as we tour around almost the entire coastline of both the North and the Republic over 26 nights. There will be an opportunity for visits into Belfast and Dublin, however this tour really focuses on the much more rural areas of the south and west coasts. It is here that Blarney, Bantry, The Ring of Kerry, The Dingle Peninsular, The Cliffs of Moher, Connemara and Ballina are all found, as we travel leisurely along the Wild Atlantic Way of the Republic. It’s then time to be in the North for some touring, firstly inland at Lough Macnean, where the water creates the border between the North and the Republic, and then to Bushmills on the North Coast. Here is home to the famous Bushmills Distillery and the natural phenomenon of the Giants Causeway.

UK Exmoor Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos

Combe Martin, North Devon

The meeting point for this tour is a well-appointed campsite near Taunton with easy connections from the M5. This sets everyone up well for a leisurely drive the following morning across north Devon and the Exmoor National Park, to arrive at Combe Martin on the North Devon coast. Our campsite is very well appointed and is within a few minutes walk of both the local beach and village. The campsite is also on the local bus route giving easy access to Ilfracombe in one direction and Lynton & Lynmouth in the other. From Combe Martin we travel along the coast to Porlock on the North Somerset coast, where you should take time during your stay to visit Porlock Weir and its boat shed museum. We then move to Slimbridge on the banks of the Gloucester-Sharpness canal close to the River Severn. From our campsite the wonderful Slimbridge Wetlands Centre is just 800m walk away. Also from here take the opportunity to visit the fascinating Purton Ships’ graveyard. At the end of the tour it is just a short journey from Slimbridge back to the M5 motorway.

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March and the return of motorhome touring edges closer

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

March and the return of motorhome touring edges closer. Thankfully the Covid-19 situation continues to improve in the UK, the vaccination rollout progresses very well and case numbers remain in the right direction. This is good for both our health and for progressing towards Coronavirus restrictions being eased.

At GB Motorhome Tours the last month has been an extremely busy period, with many alterations to the spring tour programme being required. With foreign travel for UK citizens remaining prohibited until at least a point after 17 May 2021, all foreign tours for this spring have been cancelled. Tour participants have been notified and they will shortly be offered priority to replace their foreign tour with a UK tour, more about these UK tours later. GB Motorhome Tours fully understands the importance people place on their holidays, so whenever we are forced to cancel tours we will always try and offer an alternative tour around a similar time to enable those who would like to continue with a holiday to do so. With all foreign travel destinations unachievable until at least later in the year, three UK motorhome tours have now been arranged for this spring. They are :-

A Journey around Ireland – 23 May to 18 June 2021 (26 nights) starting and finishing in Stranraer, Scotland for the ferry to/from Ireland

Scotland Highlands and NC500 – 24 May to 16 June 2021 (23 nights) starting and finishing in Scotland

Exmoor Coastal Fleeces to Flamingos – 21 June to 2 July 2021 (11 nights) starting near Taunton and finishing near Gloucester

Further information for these tours is contained on the GB Motorhome Tours website page for additional 2021 tours. The full itinerary for each tour will be on the GB Motorhome Tours website from Friday 26 March 2021 and at that time bookings for the tours will also be available.

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February and there is some optimism for travel

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

February sees Coronavirus figures in the UK heading in a better direction and linked to a successful vaccination programme there is some optimism for travel to hopefully return sooner rather than later. Exactly what form travel for this year will take remains unknown at this stage. Whatever it may be, GB Motorhome Tours is ready to make tour adjustments as necessary, with all of us at GBMT remaining fully flexible to make the most of all the opportunities for travel throughout 2021. Providing tours can run in a safe and sensible manner, GB Motorhome Tours will be making available as many tours as possible for those who would like to travel throughout 2021. At the same time, for anyone with a 2021 tour booking who prefers not to travel in this year, alternative options will be made available to delay travel to a later time. In all instances, customers with bookings will receive an email update for their tour prior to the balance payment becoming due.

Coastal Ireland tour – September 2020

It is now approaching 12 months since the pandemic started to impact on travel. Over this period GB Motorhome Tours have built up a wide range of experience and expertise in touring within the permitted limitations of travel and with varying degrees of regulations/restrictions in place. This began last March when the pandemic first started across Europe, forcing the 2020 Canary Islands tour group to initially go into ‘campsite lockdown’ and later to return to the UK one week ahead of schedule; through the successfully run UK and Ireland socially distanced tours during the summer/autumn and in to December of 2020; to this winters Canary Islands tour which is currently taking place. In all instances GB Motorhome Tours have travelled in compliance with all travel legislation & regulations of the time and in a manner that provides a high degree of safety & sensibility for the tour. This experience over the last 12 months has including adapting tours to be fully socially distanced and this could be a feature required throughout some of 2021. Once travel restrictions for UK citizens are lifted GB Motorhome Tours anticipates having tours in place for those who wish to undertake travel.

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January and the hope is for a very different travel year

Dear Fellow Motorhomer,

January and the start of the year sees much hope for better travel conditions in 2021 compared to 2020. The vaccine programme is having a strong roll out and with it comes the real anticipation that it will lead to more normal conditions for all aspects of life, including future travel. Whilst this can’t come quick enough for most, the exact timing of when this will be reached remains a little unknown at this stage.

At GB Motorhome Tours we continue to operate in a very flexible way, so we are well positioned to adapt to changing circumstances. Whilst we remain hopeful to offer all 2021 tours as planned, some of the early Spring tours may be just too early to benefit from a completed vaccine programme and could require some changes, time will give us the answer to this. In all situations, customers with tour bookings will be kept updated prior to any balance payments becoming due and thereafter, as the time gets closer to the tours start date. Like in 2020, GB Motorhome Tours will be looking to provide as many options as possible to all those with tour bookings. If your planned tour cannot proceed, wherever possible alternative tours will be offered covering a similar time period. Some of these could be in ‘closer to home’ destinations when these are offering a safe and sensible alternative. Should continental travel remain challenging at any stage in 2021, GB Motorhome Tours have trips covering Ireland and Scotland fully researched and ready to go. These can be made available at short notice and can also be arranged fully socially distanced should this be a requirement.

Sango Sands Camping, Scotland October 2020 (Included on Scottish Tours)

On all tour bookings, customers money remains secured in a dedicated trust account and continues to be fully protected throughout. In any instance of GB Motorhome Tours cancelling a tour (Covid-19 included) all customers money paid directly for that tour becomes fully refundable or transferable to an alternative tour, the choice is yours to make at the time.

GB Motorhome Tours remains confident that throughout this year a good number of tours will be completed for those who choose to travel in 2021. Hopefully many of these will be as planned, but where this is not possible, then to alternative destinations.

With an expectation that plenty of touring in 2021 will take place, over the next few months within our newsletters, various aspects of travel post Brexit will be covered.

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